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  1. 7 points
    Trip: Jack - Nohokomeen Headwall Trip Date: 05/30/2021 Trip Report: Ever since this route has become popular, I've wanted to check it out. Jack is hard to ignore from anywhere, but especially from Ross Lake, where my family and I typically like to camp for a week each August. While I have climbed Jack from the east side, the north side is the show stopper from Ross, with the giant Nohokomeen Glacier dominated the view from the north end of the lake. In the words of @Trent (though he couldn't join @therunningdog @sparverius @kmfoerster and I), "It must be climbed!" And so we did. But it wasn't fast. We spread our effort over three days, with one full day for the summit and associated lounging, and another day on either end for approaching and running away. We waited until the highway was open, so there was none of that uncivilized biking stuff you might have seen on nwhikers. No way! We were, uh, civilized. And very serious- so serious this mountain climbing business. No joking, no laughing, no resting, and certainly no campfire or whiskey... It was all business and very professional. That's how we roll. Gear Notes: Snowshoes were handy for portions....ice axe, light 2nd tool, aluminum crampons, helmet, light glacier gear. We soloed the headwall up and down Approach Notes: East Bank trail and then up by May Creek. East bank trail is mostly cut out, only one log to hop over. Light brush and pretty straightforward travel and routefinding up the hill, based on where it looks best on the map. Nohokomeen Headwall is to about 50-55 degrees and the summit ridge is exposed.
  2. 6 points
    Trip: Ruth Gorge - Kuriositeten and Mount Bradley plus others Trip Date: 04/26/2021 Trip Report: I am a little late in posting this because I had a 3 week Denali expedition right after this trip. So I am just now getting back into the swing of regular life and unpacking. Anyway I figured I would post up a trip report from the Ruth Gorge. We flew in on April 26 to the Ruth Glacier just below the East Face of Dickey. Man that is a face to dream about!! We were a team of 4 that functioned as 2 teams of 2. We just changed up partners a few times based on people’s route choice. The Ruth Gorge was Plan B and we didn’t know we were going to the Ruth until about 4 days prior to flying in. So we were pretty ill prepared with route research and overall beta (with the exception of the classic lines). Grosvenor, Johnson, and Wake (left to right), from the flight in. Talkeetna Air Taxi on the Ruth Glacier with Peak 7400 and London Towers in the background. April 27 - Our first full day on the glacier. It was warm and sunny and I teamed up with Robbie to head for Cobra Pillar and just see how the climbing was. We got up to the top of pitch 5 when the sun disappeared behind the mountain and it started to get cold. We were also less than impressed by the first 5 pitches. When the guidebook says “C1+ rotten or 5.11” you should probably just avoid that pitch! I led it and was literally kicking new footholds into the large granite crystals and hoping they wouldn’t crumble under my bodyweight. Needless to say we had no desire to go back with so much other good looking rock. Robbie on the 2nd pitch of Cobra Pillar. Robbie just after the traverse on Cobra Pillar April 28 - We scoped several lines and tried to generally figure out what lines had been done. Thankfully we had used our phone to screen shot several AAJ articles so we were able to figure out some of it. Our efforts were mostly focused on Dickey and Peak 7400 since they were the closest to camp. Scoping a potential ice line. April 29-30 - weather days. Snowed about 18 inches. May 1 - We scoped lines going south on the Ruth Glacier. Looked at stuff on Bradley, Wake, Johnson, and London Towers. We were starting to get a good sense of snow conditions based on aspect and finally figuring out where everything is. We did climb the opening 2 pitches of The Escalator on Mt Johnson. It was really fun alpine ice and it gave us a good excuse to use the ice tools and screws. There were a couple of steeper smears to the left that we hoped to climb but the ice was only about 2-3 inches thick and there wasn’t any rock pro available. Scoping "The Escalator" on Mount Johnson. Climbing up the first couple ice pitches on The Escalator on Mount Johnson. Great alpine ice! May 2 - Based on the conditions we found yesterday we deemed it prudent to give the mountains one more day to shed snow and get some freeze/thaw going so it wouldn’t be a postholing nightmare. We had brought a telescope so we looked very closely at a couple of lines that interested us and talked about what line to do tomorrow. A couple people of our group went over to check out the first couple pitches of “The Wine Bottle” on Mt. Dickey. Man that is an inspiring looking line! We watched them through the telescope. May 3 - I teamed up with Duncan to climb Kuriositeten (AI5, M3+, 800m). It is a “smaller route” that was first put up in 2008 on peak just left of 747 Pass. At 2500ft it isn’t really a small route but when you see how it looks sitting between the giants of Dickey and Bradley it appears small. The route follows a couloir splitting the east face of the peak. It is a lot of snow climbing but also contains some mixed steps and 3 distinct ice steps ranging from 15m to 70m tall. Honestly it reminded me of some of the climbing in Cody, WY, where you follow a twisting canyon/couloir always excited about what might be around the next corner. The crux is the final step. It is about 70m+ and the first half is pretty dead vertical. Thankfully the ice quality was great and we throughly enjoyed the position deap inside the slot. We had very little beta about this route so had only brought 7 screws. We were able to find rock gear for the beginning belay and then I just ran it out as far as I dared between screws. We still had to break it into 2 pitches as I found myself with only 2 anchor screws left after 35m. Duncan took the upper half and soon we found ourselves on the snow slopes above. This is a fantastic route in the Ruth and should see more traffic! One of the reasons we wanted to climb this route was to recon the decent from Bradley. One of the reports we had regarding Bradley, was to descend the “standard west ridge” but that party bailed down a face after not being able to descend the west ridge. Another report talked about descending to the Backside Glacier and walking way back around through 747 pass. Another report talked about descending the Bradley/Wake Col. To complicate matters CalTopo and Gaia both showed some weird topography anomalies on their topo maps. In fact both showed a 800-1000ft cliff coming off the back side of Bradley that looked very complicated to navigate around. The problem was the topo lines didn’t seem to match what we had heard in reports. Needless to say we were very interested in looking at the descent from the top of Kuriositeten. In the end we discovered that both Gaia and CalTopo were very wrong in their topography. In places it was off by 1000ft. What appeared to be a huge cliff was just a small snow slope that was easily walkable. We couldn’t see the whole decent but we felt much better about things after this day. Skiing over to Kuriositeten. It climbs the big gash on the peak in the middle back. Even though the line is 2500ft tall it looks small in comparison to Bradley (left) and Dickey (right). Duncan starting up Kuriositeten. Looking up from the belay at the top of the first ice step. Approaching the 3rd ice step crux. It is the narrow looking ribbon of ice way up in the slot. Duncan climbing up through the crux pitch on Kuriositeten. A fantastic route in the Ruth. From the summit of Kuriositeten looking over towards Mount Bradley. Descending the back side of Kuriositeten in the late evening light. May 4 - Rest day. May 5 and 6 - For the big goal of the trip we picked Mount Bradley. A couple of our party had started up the East Ridge of Bradley the day I had climbed on Cobra Pillar. They found deep unconsolidated snow on all northern aspects. Even though it is called the East Ridge the first 1/3 of the route is mostly on the north side of the ridge. So with no desire to go up that unconsolidated snow we searched for a new route. While looking through all of our screenshots from the AAJ we found John Frieh’s report about a linkup on Mt. Bradley. He and Dylan Johnson had also found bad snow on the start of the regular East Buttress. So with high hopes we set our eyes on their Link of “Season of the Sun" and the “East Buttress”. They rated it M5/6 and the route is 4500 feet tall. It was warm so our plan was to leave camp in the late afternoon and start the route in the evening. We were hoping that by this time the snow might start freezing back up from the day and we could avoid some nasty postholing by climbing through the night. We left camp at 4pm and but 5:15pm we were in crampons working our way up the initial snow slopes. The Season of the Sun route climbs on the right side of the SE face of the mountain and was originally put up by the Giri-Giri Boys. We were a little concerned about the reported M6 offwidth crux but figured we would take it one step at a time. After about 1000 ft of snow with short steps of rock and ice we arrived at the “crux”. We were pleasantly to find it full of ice (AI3). So after a quick romp up great ice and another pitch of low angle rock we arrived at the 2nd couloir. From here route goes up right then back left across snow slopes and around the end of a big buttress. This leads you into the big central gully about mid height on the face. The original Seasons of the Sun route cuts up and back left to stay on the face while we followed Frieh/Johnson’s variation back towards the East Buttress proper. It was somewhere in here that it got dark. Not pitch black but dark enough to warrant a headlamp when technical climbing. Several mixed pitches in the dark brought us to the East Buttress proper. From here another 2 long fun mixed pitches deposited us underneath a huge boulder. By this time it was getting light again and we were out of water. So we spent an hour brewing up and resting. The rest of the east buttress went by in a blur of simul-climbing including one section where I ran out of carabiners and slings and literally clipped the carabiner with all my nuts to a piton just so I could clip the rope in. We topped out on the summit about 10am. The decent was pretty straight forward although with more uphill than we liked. We just followed the main ridge to the west and then cut down and south to follow a different ridge line back towards the Bradley/Wake Col. Unfortunately this led us to wallow up several northern aspects of unconsolidated powder snow. Nothing like trenching in the afternoon sun when you have been up all night! We finally reached the col and took a short break to drink the last of our water and finish up our food. Then it was 2000ft of easy walking down to the last obstacle…the icefall between Wake and Bradley. From the top of the col it appeared to be less broken up on skiers left. But when we arrived skiers left there was only sagging “snow bridges” and open crevasses. We were able to end run everything far left and then rappel over the last bergshrund by leaving a bomber fixed nut in the rock. Finally home free we trudged wearily back towards the base of the route. The snow was like a trap door. Most steps you were fine but every few steps the door would open and suddenly you would be postholing to your thigh. We were excited to be back to our skis were the going suddenly got easy! Rolled back into camp at 7:30pm for a 27.5hr RT time. Starting up Seasons of the Sun. The M6 offwidth crux....we got lucky with fat ice conditions and easy climbing. Typically route conditions...soloing steep snow. About 1/4 of the way up the route now. Nearing the top of the East Buttress proper......during one of the long simul-blocks. The route up Bradley's 4500ft face. This is a linkup of Seasons of the Sun and the East Buttress first done by John Frieh and Dylan Johnson. Descending back down from the Bradley/Wake Col after climbing Mt. Bradley. May 7 - Weather day. Snowed off and on all day. May 8 - Snowed a bit then cleared up in the afternoon but wasn’t enough time for much more than a casual ski. It was warm again. We watched several ice lines we had been looking at fall off the walls. Our camp below the east face of Mount Dickey. Mount Bradley is just to the left of center in behind. May 9 - With the warm weather we opted for rock climbing. But the sun didn’t burn the clouds off until noon so we got a late start. We decided on Goldfinger which is on the Stump. We started climbing and were happy to find good quality rock. The rock quality was WAY better than the first few pitches of Cobra Pillar. Unfortunately due to our late start we lost the sun and our warmth about the top of pitch 6. We contemplated going a few more pitches but opted to just call it since it was unlikely we would top out anyway with such a late start. The climbing was very good though and it would be a classic anywhere in the lower 48. Coming up to the belay at the top of Pitch 2 of Goldfinger. Climbing pitch 6 of Goldfinger. It is fantastic climbing on very good quality rock! May 10 - With bad weather in the forecast for the next several days we opted to fly out. Several of the team members had flights out of Anchorage on the 13th so we didn’t want to be stuck on the glacier and miss flights. TAT here to pick us up. The ever changing clouds giving Mt. Bradley a moody look as we departed. Gear Notes: Alpine rack, heavy on screws for ice routes, heavy on cams for rock routes. Approach Notes: Fly in with Talkeetna Air Taxi, then ski/hike to climbs.
  3. 6 points
    Trip: Alaska, Ruth Gorge, Moses Tooth - Ham and Eggs Trip Date: 04/23/2021 Trip Report: http://www.gorobets.com/TRs/Ham_and_Eggs_2021_04_23.html Gear Notes: 2 ropes 60 m x 8.2 mm. A pair of ice tools each. 8 ice screws. 4 pickets. A set of cams from 0.2” to 3”. A set of nuts. Not used. 4 pitons. Not used. BD Spectra. Not used. V thread cord. Not used. Webbing for rappel. Not used. Approach Notes: From Root Canal air strip ascend snow slopes.
  4. 4 points
    Trip: Anderson - Eel Glacier Trip Date: 05/30/2021 Trip Report: I've been wanting to climb Anderson for years, and finally had a chance this Memorial Day weekend. My son and I drove up separately from my friend Noel on Friday night, arriving after 10:30. There was already a number of cars parked at the end of the Dosewallips road and we parked my rig in the first dirtbag pullout (with a firepit) a few hundred feet away from the end of the road. We got up at 5 am, sorted gear, and headed up the old forest road on bikes all the way to the old ranger station. This was rather pleasant in the cool morning and we made fairly quick work of it (under two hours). We did a quick gear swap (padded shorts, gloves off) and stashed our bikes then headed up trail. The trail to Honeymoon meadows was in great shape and mostly dry until the last 1/4 mile or so. As the trail followed close to the river near Honeymoon meadows some lingering snow made for interesting going (don't fall!) but it was nothing difficult. We got an ice axe out for one short step. These patches were, however, enough to turn around a couple of parties of backpackers, who we presumed had permits for the Honeymoon Meadows area. The Honeymoon meadows camp is still under snow with just a few campsites discernible. We opted to continue on as our permits were for higher up. A fast party of two caught up to us here as we tried to find a stream crossing. We recognized one person from this party and exchanged some small talk. No logs spanning the stream suited us so we took off our boots and waded across, then continued on snow up to Siberia, then on to Anderson Pass. We made camp just above the pass. Views late in our approach: Views near camp: We got an early start and headed up to the knoll and the Anderson "glacier" beyond. The same fast party of two passed us here (they had camped at Siberia) and a party of 4 caught up as well. We were not too disappointed as they all proceeded to kick a glorious boot path up to Flypaper Pass, taking a directissimo route up (I believe the usual way is a snow finger on climber's left that is the only way up). The slope was sustained 40 degrees with a few 45 degree sections. My son on the knoll above the Anderson Glacier: Anderson looking real purty: Conga line below Flypaper Pass: From Flypaper Pass we traversed under cliff bands on the right, avoiding as much loss of elevation as possible (and still following the boot path set by others). We attained the ridge which was still snow covered and followed snow to the summit. Only a few summit rocks were melted out and the final 30 feet or so was a bit exposed with bad runout, so we took our time and care. My son on the summit: KK just below the summit with glorious spring views! From the time we got to the ridge to the summit weather started coming in - with misty drizzling, so we did not linger on the summit long. We retraced our steps to Flypaper Pass. Then weather started improving. A fourth party arrived at Flypaper Pass as we prepared to descend. That made 4 parties and 13 people total on a remote Olympic mountain early season. Is there anywhere you can go these days for solitude? Noel faced out and plunge-stepped most of the steep snow down. My son and I faced in and downclimbed which was slow and strenuous. But the footing was super solid. As the slopes moderated there was some sloppy postholing. The even flatter slopes were easy going. Views S from Flypaper Pass. That big, dirty slide was about all the recent slide activity we saw. The snow is nicely consolidated. After descending face-in: We then continued back to camp. It was early enough to get part-way out, so we broke camp, dropped to Honeymoon Meadows and dug a platform on snow to camp. A couple other parties were there but the camp was nowhere near full. We took a log crossing near camp to cross the stream (we had passed it on the approach two days earlier). On Sunday morning we slept in a bit and hiked back the 9 miles or so to our bikes, then had a glorious coasting down the 6 miles or so to the cars, where an ice cold Icicle Hazy IPA awaited me. Gear Notes: Ice axe, crampons, helmet Approach Notes: Snow starting just before honeymoon meadows.
  5. 4 points
    Trip: Beebe Mountain - NE ridge Trip Date: 05/02/2021 Trip Report: A few weeks ago, @Trent and I missed the Seattle memo that everyone was to leave town with their bikes and convene at the Ross Dam TH to bike the highway before it opened. Because of that we started early enough to be quite surprised upon our return to see a steady line of bikes on the highway, going both ways! We also missed the dude backing his Sprinter over a carbon fiber road bike in the parking lot (his bike, thankfully). Apparently they make quite the pop when they explode. But I digress. BEEBE! BEEEEEEBEEEEEEEEE! Why isn't this peak more popular, given the views and access? There isn't any brush to speak of and you are pretty much guaranteed solitude in the increasingly slammed North Cascades. Is everyone on the Birthday tour? Maybe the lines will form when the snow melts and people are stuck in traffic on 20. May as well pull over and grab a summit! Just be warned that there isn't flagging any longer. We pulled a ridiculous amount down on our way up, filling our pockets. C'mon people, it isn't a hard mountain to find! Oh, and just make sure you wax your snowshoes if you go early in the season. We saw what my wildlife biologist friends called wolverine tracks Gear Notes: Bikes and .....sigh....snowshoes Approach Notes: From Hwy 20 follow timbered ridge just south of Beebe Creek
  6. 4 points
    Trip: Kulshan - Boulder Trip Date: 05/16/2021 Trip Report: Reports from this past Sunday on the Coleman sounded.... uh..... busy. On the flip side of the mountain we camped and skied alone (though three parties skied it Saturday and one party ascended to ski a different line Sunday). Those willing to endure a few shenanigans can still escape the masses, I guess. Nevertheless, @cfire @Trent and @Kit were skeptical that I could find the mountain without a beat in cattle trail. But find it we did, and it ain't getting any easier. That is the funny thing about climbing as you age, it is painfully obvious that while the mountains don't change all that much over the decades, we certainly do. Though a young guy on the summit (Ingmar, ripping skier) told me that I was in my "prime years", I don't think any of us felt that way on the slog up. I know I certainly felt a bit different than I did when I first ascended the route in the 90's! Still, I think it was about 5.5 hours up to the summit from our camp at 4700', so I guess we aren't doing too terrible. Compared to the 8ish hour round trip (from the car!) of the three young dudes we ran into Saturday, however, it certainly isn't anything to brag about. But, sitting on the snow couch, sipping whiskey, chatting, and admiring the setting, it is hard to complain about a few creaky joints. We have a beautiful backyard, and that hasn't changed. Gear Notes: skis, ski crampons, boot crampons, helmet, axe, glacier gear Approach Notes: snow blocked road about a mile below TH. Snow patchy to about 3400' where it is more or less continuous to the summit. There are a few suspect snow bridges above the cleaver (9000+), everything well filled and easy below.
  7. 4 points
    Trip: Mt Drum (Wrangell Mountains) - Southwest / Hurricane Ridge Trip Date: 05/03/2021 Trip Report: Benny Lieber and I attempted Mt Drum from May 3-8, 2021. While we didn't summit, this was still an amazing trip. It was really memorable to be visiting the Wrangells on my first trip to Alaska - a range which is pretty far off the beaten path to say the least. TR with photos: SPOKALPINE Gear Notes: Screws, pickets Approach Notes: It's hard to get flights in here. Finding a friendly private pilot is your best bet.
  8. 4 points
    Trip: Silver Star Mountain - Silver Star Glacier via Silver Star Sno Park Trip Date: 05/16/2021 Trip Report: It was a tossup between Ruby or Silver Star Mountain this past weekend in the North Cascades. First time in the National Park, so as a Washington Native and Tacoma Born/raised you can diss on me all you want Went for Silver Star instead of Ruby Mountain. Wanting that extra elevation gain! Started at 6am from the Silver Star Sno Park trailhead. Mix of trail and snow from the start. Broke out on the first Boulder field then into the swamp! Followed good tracks. With a good 4-5 feet of snow there was little punch through in the morning. Different story on the way down! Followed a SE Approach to the Silver Star Glacier. Donned Crampons and Ice Axe "just in case." Long slog to the Burgundy Col kinda like the slog to Muir? Beautiful views though! Wind from the SW was blowing through the col so grab some protection either relaxing or gearing up for the last push to the summit. Class 3-4 with a couple route options. Either right to grab some slabs with some Northern exposure or stay left and shimmy up the Chimney which I did. Easy little push through, trust the rock and a beautiful view on the summit! Some pictures around the journey. Was enjoying it too much to take my camera out all the time! Came back down the same way. People were postholing to their hips on different paths. Punched through some soft snow spots with running water underneath but nothing bad occurred. Follow me on instagram @dchromey253 for more adventures and climbs! Got Adams, Baker, (maybe Whitehorse?), another Whitney trip, Rainier in July and of course spontaneous adventures! Gear Notes: Crampons, Ice Axe, Helmet "just in case" Approach Notes: Start Early. its a beauty being in the shade. Hot on the glacier around 9am
  9. 4 points
    Brandon Seymore and I (Cliff Agocs) climbed this line in May of 2016. We chose it because it looked a little less heady than the Ravine. At the time, the first pitch was WI 3+ or so. The upper bits were moderate mixed. We never even considered if it might be a first ascent. It's hard to imagine any particular spot on Mount Hood still being unclimbed. There are probably some WI exceptions at different parts of the year on the North Buttress and on the Black Spider. However, on a moderate feature like the Eliot Headwall, it's pretty unimaginable that someone hasn't already wandered up into whatever patch of ice you climb. It is a fun route and a proud send, but it's not an FA. It's the Eliot Headwall - one of many variations. I'm happy to attach photos later, but they are on the harddrive of another computer that I don't have access to today. Happy to attach them, if folks want.
  10. 3 points
    Trip: Whitehorse - Lone Tree Pass Trip Date: 05/22/2021 Trip Report: I first climbed Whitehorse early on as I began climbing. I thought it would be a great way to introduce my son to steeper terrain with the short ramp on the top, and it's always a good conditioner as a day trip. Last year we attempted the route in early May, and ended up having the mountain to ourselves midweek. The downside is we broke trail the entire day, and I turned us around 10 feet from the summit, unable to pull the lip safely with my light 10-pt crampons and ice axe. The summit block was snow covered (a combination of graupel and sugar snow over some ice). That was disheartening and discouraging to say the least. When we got to the car I said "I'm not going back there". But time heals all wounds, and we made a return trip - a very different return trip. Firstly, the crowds. Holy fuck. We arrived to car camp the night before to a full parking area at 10:30 Friday night. Fortunately we found a spot in a wide spot in the road just outside the "lot". Then we were awoken at 2:30 am by people getting up and cars pulling in, including one young woman that hit a parked car across from us (great way to start a trip :P). Our alarms were set for 5 am, so once the crowds finished setting out by 3:30 or 4, we got a few more zzzs. We headed up at 5:40 am. Not much to say about the approach and climb. Snow was melting near the usual spot you turn off to ascend snow - I'd say 250' from the bottom to avoid the brush poking out (3250' elevation). From there it was continuous to the summit block. We took 6:50 from cars to High Pass, which I consider descent for my old, broken body. And I didn't feel bad, either. But... we were following a pounded-in boot path from that 2:30 am crowd which made for easy going. By the time we got to High Pass the crowds were all descending or off the summit block, except for one team of three who had started at 4am that we caught up to. So, we ended up just waiting a bit behind them. Everyone was soloing the snow ramp, and so did we. It's steepest was 55-60 degrees or so - steeper than I remember. I had brought 12 point grivels this time AND a 2nd tool. I wasn't about to turn around at the summit this time, but neither were necessary. We rappelled from the exposed anchor on the top. The hike out was pleasant, and we were alone the whole way down. Pics follow. First view of the objective on the approach. Note the wide boot path: Summit ramp. These pics never do make anything look steep - camera angle and all: Father and son on the summit, separately: I have summitted Whitehorse three times now. This is the first time I got summit views South! Stefan on rappel: Hiking out below Lone Tree Pass: Gear Notes: Ice axe, crampons, helmet. Approach Notes: Snow starting around 3250'
  11. 3 points
    Trip: Townsend, E. Merchant, Merchant... then Baring - Merchant Northeast Gully Trip Date: 05/30/2021 Trip Report: Due to the predicted heavy snowfall at high elevations for the Memorial Day weekend @Albuquerque Fred, @MGraw and I decided on an easy trip from Mount Townsend over Merchant to Gunn and all the Gunn peaks. This turned out to be wildly optimistic. So we did the east part, then bailed down the Merchant standard gully to a trailhead camp, then did Baring the next day for a somewhat chill two day "long" weekend. We hiked the Barclay Lake trail and the route (not quite a trail) up to Eagle lake, walked the west ridge of Mount Townsend, then following somewhat-remembered Beckey beta we went for Merchant. I kind of remembered that Beckey said it would go, but not what he said. Again, we thought this trip would be easy so we went light on beta. We traversed down from the Merchant-Townsend saddle to what looked like a hidden gully. It opened up to a beautiful mellow snow-filled gully all the way to the ridge crest. We (I at least) were stoked to have such a great route, it was a fantastic easy snow climb for 1100'. Townsend: Merchant from Townsend with the hidden gully between the east (left) and main peaks: In the gully: Topping out the gully: We walked up East Merchant (because it was there), then climbed moderate snow to the summit of Merchant. It was 5:30 pm. I had hopes of descending a gully to the SW to the basin between Wing and Merchant to a camp, but it didn't look great and we had foolishly not brought a rope (it was supposed to be easy). The plan had been to descend the south gully and reascend the western branch to get over to Gunn, but it would have involved another 1000' of climbing and then some messiness. So we made the tough choice to bail to the car (good thing we had overnight gear for this day trip). Baring from somewhere on Merchant: Descending the south gully: The south gully was not trivial anyway, so we still got to have some fun. I think this would be a great early spring route if you could nail the avalanche conditions, but it didn't seem like a very good route in these conditions to me. Maybe the party we saw the next day had a better time...? We had to bail a hand line to get down a wet slab move onto a thin snow bridge over a very deep moat (the second waterfall I believe). Fun was had by all at camp with manhattans and comfy shoes. The next day we did Baring in prime conditions. It was basically all snow from 4400' to the summit. A very enjoyable scramble to great views. Would recommend. It was like climbing looks in photos with lunch in the warm sun on the summit and good comradery, rather than the grunting, wetness and agony climbing often is. Baring gully: Easy snow near the top: Index from Baring: Gear Notes: Axe, crampons, helmet, 10m handline (bailed in Merchant S gully), overnight gear for training weight on Merchant Approach Notes: Barclay Lake trail to Eagle Lake
  12. 3 points
    Trip: North Gardener & Gardener Mountain - Wolf Creek Trail Approach Trip Date: 05/29/2021 Trip Report: Climbed North Gardener (8956') & Gardener (8898') Mountains outside Winthrop, Wolf Creek Approach. The weather was looking perfect on a long holiday weekend, time for another east side climb. Texted DanO to see if he wanted to go, he was game. We headed out Friday night, caught some Zs at the Trailhead and headed out early Saturday morning. We planned for 3 days for extra time if needed or wanted. Wolf Creek trail to Gardener Meadows was nice, some blow downs to clear. A few snow patches on the trail, the meadow up to about 7000’ is snow free. We decided to camp above the meadows about 500’ vertical. We had the hillside to ourselves, the meadow had many groups camping. We arrived early but not early enough to bag the summits and get back before dark, so we got plenty of sleep to prepare for Sunday. Sunday. DanO decided to stay at camp and maybe try for Gardener later. I headed out for Gardener at 5 am. The snow was very firm and somewhat icy in the early am. I decided not to bring crampons and was regretting that decision for about an hour. I slowly made progress up to the rock above the snow. Probably not the standard route but it got me off the icy snow. The rock was a mix of 2nd and 3rd class with lots of loose rock. Made it to the summit of Gardener before 8 am. There was a peak right next to Gardener that looked to be the same height or possibly higher, so I climbed that too just to be safe. Turns out the other more interesting looking peak was 40’ lower than Gardener, with 3rd class loose rock. Next I headed for the ridge between Gardner and North Gardener. I stayed high on the ridge and was met with loose Class 3 with some decent ledges to get around the vertical rock sections. Took some navigation to find the ledges but they are there. The connecting ridge was the most technically difficult part of the climb. I summited North Gardener around noon. Beautiful views and perfect weather. Made it back to camp around 2pm. We packed up and headed down the trail a ways to camp to make Monday's trip shorter. Monday was uneventful, 4 hours out to the car. Snow started at around 7000’. Last water was around snow level. The ridges and peaks are mostly snow free depending on your route. The bowl coming back down from North Gardener was 75% snow. The snow was perfect for plunge stepping on the way back. Lots of wildlife around the area. We saw two bears, a dozen or so deer and a porcupine over the trip. Overall this is a very nice early season climb with great views. The snow made the climb much more interesting than anticipated. Be ready for many other climbers on route, it is a very popular area. Some Tips and Notes: 1. This is a popular area so plan accordingly. 2. Snow starts at 7000’ 3. The last running water was around 7000’ 4. The ridges and the summits are mostly snow free 5. Crampons, Ice Axe and Helmet would be a good idea to bring along Travel Time for reference: Saturday: Car to Camp (6240’) 7.5 hours. Sunday: Camp to Summits to 2nd Camp 12 hours Monday: 2nd Camp to Car 4 hours Abernathy Peak on the way to camp. Gardener Mountain Summit. Mystery summit off the side of Gardener. 40' lower than Gardener but much more fun to climb. North Gardener from Gardener. Connecting ridge rock. Extra spicy section along the ridge traverse. Views where better than a poke in the eye with a stick. Snow bowl coming down from North Gardener on the way back to camp. DanO trying out his new porcupine mating call, the porcupine was unimpressed. Gear Notes: Gear used: Whippet & Trekking Pole. Didn’t bring crampons or a helmet but would have used both if available. Approach Notes: Wolf Creek Trail Approach. About 10-11 miles to Gardener Meadows.
  13. 2 points
    Trip: Mount Shuksan - Sulphide Glacier Trip Date: 05/30/2021 Trip Report: Mount Shuksan via Sulphide Glacier for some corn farming, mostly sharing for conditions update. Th > 3.5 miles to Shannon Ridge is a slog. Fun turns to be had around 7,000FT We did not get up to the Summit Pyramid, but heard it was snow with some mixed moves from other parties. Gear Notes: GPS track extremely handy for descent through the woods Approach Notes: TH to ~3.5 miles to " the notch" is more efficient to boot pack at this point. We didn't pull out skins until we were atop Shannon Ridge. View from Shannon Ridge towards the notch Traverse onto the Sulphide Glacier proper Good turns to be had Summit Pyramid
  14. 2 points
    Trip: Mount Baker - Park Glacier Trip Date: 05/30/2021 Trip Report: TR and GPS track here: https://www.jeffreyjhebert.com/adventures/park-glacier-on-mount-baker With a decent forecast over the long Memorial Day Weekend, Colin and I decided to put the work in to access the remote Northeast side of Mount Baker. It turned out we timed our trip quite well, being able to skin straight from the Heather Meadows parking lot at the Mount Baker Ski Area and encountering some tricky, but doable crevasse crossings near the top of the route. Expecting about 4-5 hours of approach, we left Seattle in the late morning, departing from the car at 1:30pm. It was hot in the bright sun as we climbed up to Artist Point and even hotter climbing up to the shoulder of Table Mountain without much of a breeze. We made it here in about 1h 20m from the car—not bad for schlepping overnight gear! The short descent toward Ptarmigan Ridge wasn’t worth transitioning for, so we awkwardly skied down the sticky warm snow and across to a point where we could start climbing again. We decided to stay relatively high and climber’s left along Ptarmigan Ridge. While this likely included a bit of extra up and down, we were able to stay with skins on all the way to the saddle next to Coleman Pinnacle, arriving in about 3 hours from the car. We did a curling traverse down and skier’s right from the saddle, keeping skins on again. This got us to what’s marked as Camp Kiser on some maps, which has a fabulous view of Shuksan. We decided to press on to The Portals, with one more awkward skins-on descent and one more climb before reaching our destination for the day after 4 hours on the dot (5:30pm). We dug out a campsite, set up shop, and enjoyed a lovely evening watching the mountain pink up. Knowing the upper Northeast-facing cirque would bake as soon as the sun rose, we got going decently early, skiing away from camp at 5am. There is a cliff band at roughly 6,150 feet which is tough to scope well from above. We eventually found an exit we could ski at the far skier’s right edge of our traverse from camp, then skied down onto the Rainbow Glacier. The snow was quite firm but the angle looked reasonable to skin all the way up, so we put ski crampons on. Our ascent of the glacier went smoothly, weaving around crevasses as we encountered them and using some photos we’d taken of the route from camp the evening prior. A big sulfur vent near 8,000 feet really completed the volcanic ambiance. At about 9,000 feet, we skinned up between two gaping crevasses running vertically down the mountain. At about 9,500 feet, we had to end run a big crevasse toward the North before swinging back left across the face. It was clear from here that the “moat” described in the ski tour guidebook as being “easy or difficult depending on conditions” was fully out and would easily fit a school bus. We’d expected to come back across the face to find a ramp across a high crevasse and this worked out well. The snow bridge crossing this final crevasse was a good 8 feet wide, spanning a narrow point about 10 feet across. The rest of the crevasse was much more open and it was a big one. I gingerly skinned across with Colin below me and the rope tight, thinking light thoughts until I was safely on the other side. I dug in and body belayed him across. From there, our final challenge was to make a traversing ascent of the headwall above this gaping crevasse. Thankfully, the snow was perfect for kicking in good steps and we just took our time. At 10,180 feet, I busted through a small cornice and onto the ridge above the Cockscomb. It was relatively easy going from there across ice and wind-affected snow. We reached the top at 10:15am, so just over 5 hours from camp despite that painstaking rising traverse. We celebrated briefly, explained where we were coming from to some folks coming from the Coleman-Deming, and then scooted back from whence we came to get back across that face and the snow bridge before things warmed much further. Thankfully both went well and we were able to enjoy a stress-free 4,000-foot ski back down the Park and Rainbow Glaciers. The snow was heaviest up high and improved the lower we went, with really fun corn on the bottom third. We skinned back up towards camp, booting the short cliff band and then side-hilling through south-facing slop. We arrived at 1pm and had a nice, leisurely lunch with some tea. Fresh socks were downright luxurious. The rest of our descent went smoothly, mostly retracing our approach line except for taking a lower route North of Coleman Pinnacle to avoid gaining unnecessary elevation. At 5:30pm, we arrived at the Heather Meadows parking lot and retrieved our stashed beers from a snowbank. Over 22 miles with a lot of traversing made for some pretty beat-up feet and we were very excited to exit our boots. Obligatory Aslan Brewery waffle fries and burgers capped off an excellent 2-day adventure. Gear Notes: Skis, crampons, axe, glacier kit Approach Notes: Buckle up for a long up and down traverse from the Mount Baker ski area
  15. 2 points
    Every outing, rain or shine, is an opportunity to learn about climbing and yourself. Keep at it! I love the youthful energy. Something this site has lacked for a while. Keep bringing the stoke, dude!
  16. 2 points
    reckon you just have to pick which part of the hike will potentially suck, the middle or the top - there's no time like the present though
  17. 2 points
    Thanks for the negativity @Cptn_Sprayhab! Always super conducive to constructive conversation. I'm so sorry I don't update my insta-jizz to your instant standards. I am glad you had the time to check out my page though, thank you! I really don't care about this being an FA or not. I went back and worth about whether to post about it, but figured I'd do it to see (as my original disclaimer reads) if this particular line has been done before and if it had any history, as it was an intimidating and engaging crux (for my weak self at least). I think this conversation opens up a whole can of worms about FA's and grades and sharing stuff online and so on (I do try to stay away from spraying on MP, and I thought CC was a safe place). This is something I've wrestled with personally a lot. There are powerful stories to tell from up there, but at what point does sharing your story dilute the experience and open it up to analysis and judgement from folks who weren't there and don't know you? I am all for preserving sense of adventure and don't want to see everything put up online either. But climbing is not what it looked like back in the day, and at a certain point we have to simply accept that, and rethink our definition of adventure (which, news flash, is different for everybody). What makes me sad and somewhat disgusted at the climbing community is when I see ego evolved in our outdoor pursuits. It's all contrived as fuck. There are no rules. We're trying to fit square pegs (humans, grades, history) into round holes (nature). Especially when it comes to ice climbing, even grading things seems stupid, as there is so much variation from year to year, even day to day. Same with FA's. What does it really matter if someone climbed a particular piece of rock or ice before? I agree with you, it doesn't. What matters most is following your inspiration and coming up with your own adventures that challenge and excite you. Which is what we did here. I do acknowledge that I jumped the gun calling this a first ascent and posting on here and will learn from that mistake. I look forward to hearing what you consider to be a "real" FA. Are people like Steve House (or God forbid, the holy grail of IFMGA-land) the only ones with the authority to call something an FA? Do the only legit FA's involve having to travel halfway across the world to some foreign country, where the locals may not even know what climbing is and why people do it? Let's not take ourselves too seriously here, and just go have fun outside with our friends.
  18. 2 points
    Looks like Adrien changed his Instagram post. Good for him, and knowing the guy, I bet he just didn't care enough about social media to make the change right away. Cptn, you quoted a post I made on the "Do summits matter?" thread. To be completely transparent I've made the same mistakes of assuming FA-ship in the past, its an easy mistake to make in the scheme of things. In fact, this past winter I claimed a couple "Second Ascents" which could very well be 10th ascents for all I know. That includes the Emde-Ablao on Middle Sister that Adrien and I did without any knowledge of the prior ascent and which I promptly sprayed about, so I'm probably a hypocrite here... though I do like the idea of preserving the adventure as I said, especially in Oregon where resources are limited. Anyway, mainly I'm psyched to see Adrien, Matt and others getting after it this winter and I think it would be awesome to have an Oregon crew competing for grants and making trips to bigger ranges like the Karakoram in the next few years to try exploring more off the beaten path objectives and getting some more good adventure stories here.
  19. 2 points
    and I have see it in late july with 4 wall to wall crevasses that had sketch bridges that failed before our return back from summit. the hydro dynamics of glacier flow through that notch guarantee that there are crevasses that you may or not see. if one was forced at gun point to solo a glacier, the sulphide glacier on shuksan would be a better choice. or eldorado pk. traveling on glaciers in late august thru september is very enlightening to exactly what one has walked over just 2 months previous. recommending a glacier as "chill" without seeing that same glacier bare of winter coverage is reckless advice.
  20. 2 points
    Trip: Mt. Index - Lake Serene photo trip Trip Date: 03/23/2021 Trip Report: I did a morning hike up to Lake Serene last week to fly my drone and get some new views of Mt. Index. Thought some of you might enjoy a couple images. Gear Notes: DJI Mavic 2 Pro Approach Notes: I thought there would be a good boot pack but the last traverse was snowshoed and I punched through a bit.
  21. 2 points
    Trip: Robinson Mountain (8726') - Northeast Ridge Trip Date: 05/22/2021 Trip Report: I climbed Robinson Mountain (8726’) outside Mazama, Northeast Ridge Route. I started the climb from the Robinson Creek Trailhead, a little over 9 miles down Lost River Rd. from Mazama. I decided to head East over Hwy 20 to see how much snow is in the Eastern Cascades. There is a lot less snow on the east side, but still a decent amount depending on the peak. Robinson Mountain has melted out faster than the surrounding peaks by quite a bit. The weather was perfect. Clear skies and warm. I was prepared for a long day on the mountain so I started up the trail around 5:30am to leave plenty of time before dark. You will cross two bridges on the main trail heading up. About 40 feet after the 2nd bridge (that crosses Beauty Creek) look for the climber’s trial on the right side of the trail heading uphill (about an hour up the trail depending on your speed). The climber’s trail heading up towards Robinson Mountain is fantastic. It is one of the nicest climber’s trails I have ever climbed up. I’ve been on trails that are on maps that are not as nice as this climber’s trail. Snow started at around 4600’, patchy at first, then pretty solid until you turn to go up the grassy slope (5200’). The grassy slope is snow free up until about 6000’. 6000’ to the top of the ridge is all snow. The last running water I came across was a small waterfall right below the lake. The lake (6750’) is still snow covered with a couple spots of water opening up. Water up before going up to the ridge or be prepared to melt snow. From the lake I went up the snow covered slope to the left (south) to gain the ridge. I followed that ridge to the main Northeast ridge that leads to the summit. Most of the ridge is snow free. The climbing is mostly class 2 with a short section of class 3 here and there. The section going up the false summit is the most difficult being exposed 3rd class for about 50 feet. Coming back from the summit I decided to go straight down the snow bowl toward the lake. The snow had been in direct sun for hours so it was perfect for plunge stepping. Overall this is a very nice early season climb. The snow melts off the peak early and the views are awesome. 6100’ of climbing gives you a good workout to boot. Some Tips and Notes: 1. This is a long day trip. Took me 11.5 hours total time. Average fit climber pace. 2. The last running water is right below the lake. 3. An ice axe would be a good idea to bring along, as the snow gets somewhat steep in sections. 4. Snow starts at 4600’ 5. The ridge to the summit is mostly snow free. Travel Time for reference: Car to Summit 6.5 hours – Summit to car 4.5 hours Bridge over Beauty Creek. Start of the climber's trail after Beauty Creek Bridge. Look for the broken off tree stump. Climber's trail. Nice enough to be on a trail map. Lake and snow bowl leading to the ridge. Heading up to the ridge on the left (south) side of the lake. Looking down to the lake while heading up to the ridge. Looking up the Northeast ridge to the summit. Looking down the Northeast ridge from the summit. The views from the summit are fantastic! You can see almost all of the major peaks in the Cascades. Gear Notes: Whippet, Ice Axe & Helmet. Brought crampons but didn’t need them. Approach Notes: Robinson Creek Trailhead start location. Head up the climber's trail about 40' past the Beauty Creek bridge.
  22. 2 points
    Here are all the photos we took that day.
  23. 2 points
    This week's installment of Slurpee Death, brought to you by Mount Shuksan..... tune in next Monday for the main event on the Coleman Headwall!
  24. 2 points
    Thanks. Look forward to the pics. I do know Trevor. He has endless energy, scales steep snow in mushy running shoes, has an ape index of +21, and puts three knee bars into every line he climbs because its part of his religion.
  25. 2 points
    Trip: Mclellan Peak - NE Couloir Trip Date: 05/02/2021 Trip Report: My friend Matt and I climbed the NE Couloir of Mclellan earlier this month. I've been intrigued by it since seeing an old Jens Holsten blog post a couple years ago and not being able to find anything else about it otherwise. Theres a brief mention of a route on Mclellan in the WA ice guidebook. I waffled about writing this up because I think the Stuart Range doesn't have a lot of options for solitude. I'm sure people will still flock to the usual spring classics. I settled on doing a more lazy, bare bones style trip report on this to shed some light. Social media is your best friend for seeing conditions of popular faces in the range. The route is fairly short. Similar in length and difficulty to the NW Couloir of Eldorado. Its likely to be easier early season (duh), but it seems likely to have large cornices at the snowfield/ridge at the top out. Theres two exit options, the left (hidden, except maybe from the northwest) being shorter and slightly easier. This gives a bit of contingency with route and cornice conditions. In the conditions we had I'd say it was WI3. First two pitches, taken later in the morning on the decent back to camp: Matt coming up firm snow after the first ice pitch: Second pitch: Early April 2017. The first ice pitch is completely buried: Gear Notes: Pins, screws, rock pro to 1". Emphasis on small gear. Pickets if you'd like, we didn't take any. Approach Notes: Snow Lakes. Leave the trail at the western-most footbridge above Upper Snow Lake. Decend via the standard route.
  26. 1 point
    Looking for over-50 climber(s) to partner with for Rainier this coming season. I (59 yo male) can't be the old guy on a team of 30-somethings, so I'm looking for partner(s) who are closer to my age for better compatibility. Thanks! Theo
  27. 1 point
    "9 out of 10" is amazing, for me it's been worthwhile rereading every few years. I definitely have tried to follow the recommendation about lots of easy mileage to improve technique, although I don't keep track of individual pitches -- partly laziness, but mostly I do a lot of bouldering. I guess one thing I would add is that for me it's really a cycle between strength training and technique training (which Dave Macleod calls taking time to apply a new level of strength to the rock). For me a new level of strength enables technique practice that would've been impossible before. I also feel like the rock angle is maybe more important than the grade for technique practice. If I split climbing technique into two parts: 1. moving limbs and hips to allow easy upward progress vs 2. attaching feet and hands to the rock, then for 1. there's very little common technique between a 15 deg overhanging route and a 15 deg slab route, or even a vertical route. On the other hand, routes at the same angle require largely the same limb/hip (1.) technique regardless of grade -- the holds mostly just get smaller. Rock type is also important, though I think less so -- the biggest effect of rock type is perhaps getting used to granite (& others) often not having actual holds. Before I started serious hangboarding, I was basically plateauing around granite .10. But after just my first hb phase a whole new world of technique practice became possible: to me there feels like a qualitative change somewhere between mid .10 and mid .11 on granite. You go from making your feet stick to the wall mostly from gravity (with your hands sometimes pulling you on a little bit), to sticking your feet to the wall mostly with counter pressure from other limbs (pulling with fingers on vertical, pushing with palms or feet stemming or chimneying, heel hooking around an arete). Without a certain level of finger strength:weight ratio, you just can't hang around long enough on vertical terrain to learn how to make your feet stick. And if you're born with typical levels of finger strength:weight, you'll need to start hangboarding more around .11 (anderson bros) than .12 (josh w), .13 (dave m), .14 (sonny trotter), or .15/never (tommy caldwell). Climbing with crampons is trickier, it's just vastly more time consuming (and dangerous) to get a given amount of mileage than it is with rock shoes. And as yall are saying, mixed crags tend to be developed with the goal of pulling hard on good pockets, whereas alpine climbing is more standing around and pulling lightly on teensy edges. I do think that climbing similar-angle routes in rock shoes is great technique learning for alpine crampon climbing -- it only address limb/hip technique (1.), but "onsighting vertical terrain" has lots of skills that are the same whatever your footwear. The crampon/tool interface with the rock (2.) still has to be layered on top, but that's much less time consuming than having to work on both. The difficulty of ice climbing, on the other hand, is almost entirely in attaching your fingers and toes to the wall (2.) -- pure ice uses only an extremely limited repertoire of different climbing moves. More directly related to your counting question, while I just try to maximize number of moves rather than keeping track of individual pitches, I guess you could say I "keep track" of whether I should be focusing on technique or strength based on which I feel is causing me to fail at my goal routes at a given point in time. Right now it's super clear to me that I fail at granite onsighting, which is my main rock shoe priority, because of route reading ability -- where to switch from stem to layback, where to place what gear, etc. This is the complete opposite case to where I was a few years ago, where I'd usually find close to the best way to do moves at my level fairly quickly, but would pump out. On ice I'm in a similar technique-limited boat -- I'm comparatively bad at understanding and trusting how pointy bits penetrate ice. The nice thing about this place is that onsighting lots of stuff is waaaay the fuck more fun than hangboarding, ha ha.
  28. 1 point
    Totally agree on the ice. Its interesting to see the numbers, turns out I'm pretty similar. For mixed climbing we have a couple local dry tool crags, one up by Bachelor ski are and one at an overlooked cliff at Smith Rock. There is another mixed crag getting developed up on the Cascade crest but its early stages. The other thing I do is go to this less-travelled rock crag in winter and climb the mossy/chossy grooves on gear between the actual rock climbs. Done a few 2 pitch routes that way and it makes for a good bad weather adventure practice day. Also, trying to get on more mixed stuff when I go up to Canada and other places. I feel like mixed is one of the limiters of me doing harder routes in the alpine. Like you said, M3/4 in the alpine is fine. Getting on bolted M6/7 is convenient and straightforward. But getting on alpine M5/6 with confidence opens up a whole slew of possibilities.
  29. 1 point
    When I climbed Jack, I exclaimed "once and done" when back at the cars. But after seeing this TR, I'm rethinking that.... TFPU!
  30. 1 point
    Nice pics J. Thanks for the invite. It was a memorable route and trip.
  31. 1 point
    I have to say that this thread shows the board's, uh, maturation. "Don't end up like me, use Invisalign!" -FB
  32. 1 point
    I agree with the above comments, the section below the false summit is steep and a fall would be bad, so here is a thought. Go late season (August - September) after the snow has melted out. Rather than take the Cascadian Couloir, hike past the turn off and continue east on the Ingalls Creek trail and take a path that climbs the ridge between the Cascade Couloir and Sherpa Basin. The trail is much better than CC. You can cut back west once above the the nasty scree and sand in a decent talus field below the false summit.
  33. 1 point
    yup, folks definitely get killed on that steep snow section below the false summit, and it stays there pretty far into the summer as i recall
  34. 1 point
    I agree with the comments above. I've also only descended the Cascadian but recall that there is a section below the false summit that is quite steep, exposed, and wil likely be snow covered for a while. Travel on snow can definitely be faster than on talus or scree, but steep snow can be very hazardous if you don't know what you're doing. You need to be solid moving over snow that can be anywhere from mush to firm to solid ice. You should also be proficient at using an ax to self arrest on soft snow and know when and how to use a rope when self arrest won't be possible. Just because other people solo steep snow doesn't mean you should blindly do so. All that said, if you're going to get out into the mountains of Washington you're going to encounter a lot of snow, so becoming proficient at dealing with it will serve you well far beyond an ascent of Stuart.
  35. 1 point
    Trip: Guye Peak - South Rib Trip Date: 05/25/2021 Trip Report: Yeah we climbed it in the rain. Why? Who knows. Something something 'save the real routes for sunshine' lol. I won't be doing that again. Guye has been on my summit list for a while, but I was thinking it would be a hike/scramble to bag it, until the right partner came along. Zach wants to hit the Improbable Traverse; I am skeptical of hoe much fun that would be. Instead (since it's raining) we decided on the south rib, listed as a 'practice climb' in big brown beckey. That means it can't be too good, as we discovered. Weather forecast slowly got worse as we drove out. It was rather foggy arriving at the Sahale ski club, where I obtrusively stuck my beat to hell truck on the road. Immediately I wished for microspikes on the snow. The schwack was nothin' doin', a few feet of slide alder and a talus field. We found that random sport route on the side of Guye too. Hardware looked incredible. We pitched out the first 4th class bit cause the rock was soaked. I led too far up onto a big slab running out of rope with no pro. Note to self, return those approach shoes, they can't smear on wet slabs! I found one miniature .75 placement and told Zach not to fall. This is not as dramatic as it sounds. Zach led a simul block up around bulges on the slab and into a gully. Patiently awaiting his maneuvers below I almost got domed by a toaster block or three. Guye's rock fractures just like the worst basalt at Vantage, it's fucken weird. We took stock of our routefinding at the top of the gully/corner/waterfall. From there we each made two longer simul blocks up through dirt, trees and a few 3rd class rock steps. Gotta say this was not the most interesting climbing. 250 feet of 3rd and 4th, a chossy death gully, and then a bunch of mossy trees. Oh well. Took a short break for Zach to have a phone interview (don't ask....) and eventually summitted. Still no views. The north side of each block had a good amount of snow. Foregoing the ice axe was a very poor choice. Thus rappelling into the SE couloir (fairly fresh tat/rings) and kicking mushy steps into a 80 degree snow finger with the whole couloir below us was...sporting. Descent was uneventful, besides long, slippery, and wet. Clouds cleared up at that point though. On approach Gear Notes: Light rack, helmets, should've had ice axe for summit/descent Approach Notes: Up the Sahale Ski club thing, snow covered but easy, then right around the base of Guye.
  36. 1 point
    Thanks @Cliffordsa for the photos and info! Looks like the exit pitch was pretty dry for you as well? There's a random photo on mountain project that shows ice flowing down each side of the chockstone but I never saw it form in my many trips over there this year. @Cptn_Sprayhab I don't see a problem here. @ACosta originally said that the line may have been climbed before and promptly retracted the FA claims when we found out it had been. I find the pervasive "every square foot of Hood has been climbed" belief interesting. No one (so far) has taken issue with our Cathedral Ramp FA claim from a month ago. No one disputed Three Little Monkeys in 2018 or the Pencil in 2017. Other Black Spider routes were put up as recently as 2010 and no one complained about those either. Either all those lines were in fact unclimbed or the true first ascensionists have advanced into a Zen state of truly not caring at all. It's easy to assume some near mythical figure like the aforementioned Steve House would've done everything on Hood, but apparently when asked "what's the best alpine route in Oregon?" he settled on Jeff Park, which probably barely registers as "real climbing" to most of the people in this thread. So it's reasonable to think his Hood resume might not be that extensive. Of course there have been a lot of hard people who have done a lot of hard things on Hood, and some of them have undoubtedly kept quiet about it. It wouldn't surprise me if any number of the routes I mentioned above had been previously climbed. But if people are going to be purposefully secretive or reclusive then they're willingly removing their own voices from the conversation and there's not much the rest of us can do about it. Preserving "ground up adventure climbing" is an interesting topic of discussion but if that's a style of climbing you'd like to pursue shouldn't you just, I don't know, avoid spending time on climbing information websites like this one?
  37. 1 point
    Trip: Seward Peak - Standard - West Ridge Trip Date: 05/23/2021 Trip Report: Yesterday me and @Albuquerque Fred climbed the seldom done Seward Peak on the shoulder of Mount Baker. It was very enjoyable in this season and I would highly recommend it. I would imagine that later in the year it might become less fun due to brush and more challenging choss scrambling. We didn't see a soul after the road, nor any sign of people other than some cut brush. But then again we didn't see much at all. We drove up the spurr road labeled as FS Rd 38, adjacent to Ranking Creek, until the third switchback with no problem; after this the road looked good for just as much as you can see, then after that it gets really ugly and rough. Two parties in trucks did make it two more switchbacks and were camped when we walked by but I bet it took as long as walking did. Photo of the road after the third switchback, the trough on the left is very rough and pretty deep. The brush on the old road grade wasn't bad; I think this was the perfect time of year since nothing was leafed out yet and snow covered a lot of it. Continuous snow cover began around 3900' so we donned snowshoes to get them off our backs and for traction. We continued on what seemed to be an old road bed continuing north through the last switchback shown on the map and took a hard right uphill into a gully/clearing at 4200', continuing up to the ridge crest. About here we realized we had hiked up into the clouds and it remained a whiteout for the rest of the day. I think this is Fred around 6000'. We stopped to remove snowshoes and contemplate our fate at 6100', right below the first cliff band, though we couldn't see it. After a break we got a very short opening, just enough to plan out a route: We went up the snow ramp, scrambled a short section, up the large snowfield to the top left above the horizontal rock island, then scrambled a gully to the ridge crest. This must be the standard route because we passed several rap slings. Looking back down the gully: Me too high on the ridge: Beckey says to ascend the ridge then descend on easy ledges, I would say you almost immediately descend after reaching the crest, we went waaay to high to the top of a gendarme and had to backtrack a lot, loosing tons of time (we couldn't see anything). We descended on snow into the south bowl and climbed to the final rock band. In this season this was mostly moderate snow with a short scramble section. Then a few minor ups and downs on the ridge to the summit. Worth it for the views, Baker in the distance: We left a tube with some register paper behind since we didn't find anything and it seemed doubtful there would be a register. Please let me know if I'm mistaken. We spend all of one minute on the summit and headed out. Ascending back to the ridge crest: Two 90' raps down the gully, downclimb the snowfield, then one rap on pretty easy ground to the snow ramp and back to the world. 11 hours car to car with lots of dinking around routefinding in the whiteout. 5300' gain. Gear Notes: (2) 30m ropes, snowshoes, axe, helmet, crampons, mountaineering boots Approach Notes: Middle Fork Road to the third switchback near Rankin Creek. Not too brushy, snow cover began at ~3900'.
  38. 1 point
  39. 1 point
    Good points. I retract my recommendation!
  40. 1 point
    Did you guys make it past the big ass gate on FS Rd. 38 that has the warning about being video monitored? There is some BS notation about a wildlife closure 12-1 thru 6-15 on some maps. Climbing in whiteouts is fun, it's like entering a parallel universe where you get to wander around inside the mind of Joe Biden when he's trying to read a teleprompter.
  41. 1 point
    It is true @Bronco! Mostly it is because snowshoeing is.....uh....fun? On that particular day I hate to admit that they were the proper tool though. We found zero good snow for skiing from 3800' to the summit. Mostly it was varying crusts over isothermic mush.
  42. 1 point
    Trip: Pistol Boulders - The North SnowfedScrubBeltMossEatingChossFeedingLowball Arete (post- AND pre-break Trip Date: 05/10/2021 Trip Report: (All dates are approximate) Salutations, rotting-material-disposing-of umbilical creatures. A few things about myself (Daniel) and my PiC {Partner in Choss} (Trevor), before we begin. Things I am not: A competent boulderer, an experienced climber, someone who has climbed at Index more than twice, someone who has climbed at Index other than rope soloing more than zero times, or legally able to buy alcohol. Things I am: Full of youthful vigor, a man with an unhealthily high tolerance for wielding the mighty Brush & Hammer while inhaling mud and/or moss dust and/or broken steel bristles and/or droplets of Trevor's sweat, a lopsided brain-carrying individual who cannot let a day go by without organizing some click-and-drag meaningless 'net site/endlesspatiently correcting those sore souls who are Wrong and Portray There Wrongness on the Interwebz, and able to consume alcohol (illegally.) Things Trevor is not: That Into Bouldering. (Hast anyone heard of a legendary figure known as Trad Princess?) Things Trevor is: Really Into Choss and Lowballs. Those of you who know Trevor (Rad) can fill in the rest in yer heads. Well, there's bouldering on I-90 now. (middle fork and the pass) Erk. Bouldering that isn't '''''''''''''''''secret'''''''''''''' enough to post on Youtube and discourage others from finding it. (Deception Glade / Far Side boulders) K. What we've done is double the number of boulders in the North Bend area, with a 30min (contrived [aLl cLiMbinG Is coNtrIveEd]) approach (better than the Gold Bar slog) and a much closer drive than the Bavarian Granitodise or the All-Arete Granodiorite Seep Road Hike Festival. What's the downside, you ask. (Or rather, you ask, 'why should I care.') Well, they're certainly smaller (and can only get smaller), dirtier (but will get cleaner) and lower quality (lowball lovers unyte) than the aforementioned Leavenworth or Gold Bar. There's plenty of good beginner climbs plus some awesome harder ones............................... however. How did this come about, (I doubt that) you ask. June 2020. It all begins with the legendary Beered Rowe. Legends speak of the tru first name of the legendary Stone Gardens routesetter, the legendary Kyle. During his legendary rampage through Washington finding the one problem at every new area that required zero cleaning whatsoever, doing zero cleaning whatsoever, making a sic send vid, and posting the problem on Mtn Project, Beered wandered below the Gun Show cliff and named two legendary routes with legendary names (no, actually, really unimaginative): Inside Out V6 and Upside Down V2. He then posted them on Mountain Project. No one repeated them. (Apologizes to Kyle if he reads this.) Late January 2021. Trevor Puppy Lovr, as he is known on the Project of Mountains, also known as Trevor Taylor, heads up to Corona Crag to find it snowed in and sketch as h*ck. His insatiable desire to develop SOMETHING led him to the posting of the comment on Beered's page, inviting anyone to come help him clean the 'other boulders that need cleaning' below Gun Show. Jan 20. I, during my daily scan of new comments on Washington areas, happen upon Trevor's comment. Recalling my favorable impression of his Mtn Prj forum personality (turns out it was his real one), and desperately needing a real climbing partner, decide that being willing to muck about in muck would ingratiate the Puppy Lovr and trick him into thinking I was a climber worth actually climbing with. Jan 21. Trevor receives my message, and tentatively sets a date to explore. Feb 3. I show up (10 minutes late) to the Far Side parking lot. There's white stuff on the ground (g-g-g-gaddagagasp). I look past the extremely lanky unkempt fellow for Trevor. Oops. I hold back my kneejerk comment ('Your Mtn Prj avatar is very misleading as to your looks, probably cause it's mostly your puppy and wife, I'd fix that if I wert thou') and manage a hoarse 'Hey, you Taylor?' Hoarse because I sing with raucous vocal power while lone in the truck cab. Fortunately, he didn't hear my slipup. Off we go on the slippery trail. Fortunately for my throat, Trevor is happy to chat about (sport) climbing (is neither) adventures all over the Exits and 'that time I climbed Mile High Club with Rad and he had to TR solo the bottom half with a bucket of developing gear.' You didda WAT? I've stumbled upon a tru blu dirtbag, says I. (This impression was formed mostly due to his mullet and beard). We discover the boulders. I have no opinion, my few trips to Gold Bar been mostly for the use of bushwhacking rather than climbing. Trevor deems them 'mega classic.' We begin with a brush and expose some rock, then wander about to see the rest. Thiccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccc moss is quite apparent on anything that looks interesting to me (slab). Feb 5. I go out alone to clean, get too excited by a slab, and slip stemming against a tree to fall ten feet into a hole. Feb 9. We meet again in the parking lot, again carrying pads against all odds, again carrying brushes which are always useful. The boulder we cleaned is.... dry? There's snowpatches on the freakin' dirt for Sam Hill's sake. Now comes the moment in which Trevor sees my climbing prowess. I manage to send the V1 stand first, and eventually get the V3 low start too... this went through a succession of names and we've settled on Stunher. Don't ask. Please don't. And if all else fails, don't blame me, it was Trevor's idea, and his first one was worse. Feb 16. Another lonely soul (but a crusher of 12s), he of the lovely nomenclature Evan Lovely-Meyers, joins us for a night of scrubbing and exploring. Before he arrives, we fail to bolt a boulder for cleaning due to drill bit mistakes. Lel. A tree has fallen on are MostCurrentlySiked [sic] boulder, so we go to work sawing the branches off. The snow is three feet deep in some drifts, but we discover the Titanium and Chamber boulders. Walking out on the highway with headlamps, us three vagabonds are mistaken for lost mfs, and a passing snowmobiler (in a truck) offers us assistance. Feb 21. We decide that the Pistol Boulders (below the Gun Show amirite hehehe L.O.L. rofl lmao lmaorofl jfc what am I saying Ah HA HA HA) is an appropriate name and begin texting names back and forth intended to shock, with a twist. For example. Trevor: "Imagine if we named a route KKK but in the description we put it stands for Kurt Killed a Klansman lol" Me: "lol sounds funny lol" Him: "lol yeah let's do it" We don't do it. Feb 24. We scrub again. Evan begins the long process of realizing he wants to climb, and not scrub, by bailing. We love you Evan. Feb 27. Trevor scrubs solo. We've finished most of the original area (or so we thought) and have begun the enormous task of cleaning the award-winning Least-Productive-Boulder-By-Size-to-Route-and-Route-Quality-Ratio-Boulder, aka the Philosophical Sandeagle Boulder. There were inches of dirt and several bushes on the 200+ square foot top before we put a bolt in (after failing twice on the Slab & Wesson Boulder) and (Trevor) takes a shovel and leaf blower to it's face. (It never stops seeping). The first of the lowballs begins on the Montgomery Boulder. Trevor makes the historic first ascent of the Initiation to the Pistol Boulders, Experience Beats Youth V1+, in hiking shoes. March 3. We scrub, I make the second (not flash) ascent of Experience Beats Youth and the first of Montgomery Mantle V0. Evan bails again. (We still love you Evan.) I add boulder pages to Mountain Project, attracting attention from a few nosy users. We discover the leaning boulder that Must be Seen to Be Believed and Trevor sends Weight of the Universe V4. Beta: Double toe hook, left heel hook, right heel hook, mantle. At least if you're 6'3" +4 ape like the Trevdog. Then (wow what a send day! Either that or I have the dates QUITE wrong) Trevor takes out Barrel in the Butt V5, later renamed Turd Burglar. March 4. I draw a map, prematurely. March 6. Trevor, a sport climber at heart, puts two more bolts in boulders. (They really are necessary.) The bushmud covered top of the Titanium boulder begins to clean up as well as some steep faces. March 7. I bring my brother out to help scrub, on the Titanium boulder and (true to form) a few lowballs. Trevor hikes in gear and pads while not eating all day for medical reasons. March 8. I climb solo, sending a few V2s and 3s that I (embarassingly) hadn't sent yet. March 9: Scrubadub rub, three brushes down to stubs There's dirt in my pants and my nails are nubs Garbage bag coat and a dirty ball cap The rules of Dig Club I burn into the map Moss smell is noticeable to those at my work I shake off weird looks with a quite nervous twerk It was hard to sleep at first cause the rocks are so cool Now cause my nose hurts and there's mud in my stool Sick lines abound, but on the lowballs we scrub 'This ain't gettin' no chicks to give us a back rub.' doncha know brajjjjjjj shitty poetry is the opiate, of, like, the masses, man? Right? Or is that something else? March 10. Silencer, the proudest line in the North Bend region, requires surprisingly little brush work. Trevor begins to work it and finds it exceedingly difficult. (My Tarantulaces (yeah, I know...) have holes worn in the toes so even if there were feet on this thing I couldn't stickem. March 11. Trevor works Silencer solo as I am a lazy ass lil bitch. March 16. I can't remember anything about this day but we did something or other. Not each other though ghey lol. March 17. I rear end a Subaru, putting my truck out of commission for some time. Trevor soldiers on alone while I replace the radiator, oil filter, timing belt, engine mounts, transmission crossmember and (still not yet) bumper. Oh, the humanity. March 21-23. Puppy Trev sends Silencer, thinking he captured it on video when it fell over a second in. It's a brilliant slightly overhung V6+ on very grippy rock and tiny holds. Also, Pistol Pinch, a desperate double pinch huge kneebar start three millimeters off the ground, on a six foot tall boulder. The first repeat is still up for grabs. April 2. I fix my truck. Left in the wake is three oil-ruined sets of clothes and two weeks of brutal labor. Oh, the HUMANITY MOTHERFRACKER! IT'S HUMANITY! SYMPATHIZE! EMPATHIZE WITH MY POOR CHOICES AND LAUD MY EFFORTS! hehe. April 3-10. We rarely see each other but Trevor sends most of the easier routes in the Access Road Zone. We're about finished, except for a few projects thy Trevpup wants to attempt (d.r.a.m.a.t.i.c ForeShadowing) and some trail work. April 12. 'I wanna try Turd Burglar' touts Trevor. The low start to Barrel in the Butt is a climbing-through-a-hole sit dab nightmare with the Barrel in the Butt (a large rock) making it impossible. The rock is the best (read: razor sharp, sharper than the sharpest granite) in the area. D R A M A T I C F O R E S H A D O W I N G (Oh, I'm good.) April 13. We knock the rock out of the hole, thus Barrel in the Butt is no longer an applicable name. Trevor begins to suss out the start, moving higher and higher up as it just feels impossible. Body tensioned horizontally under the roof, PupperTrevPupper's foot blows, his knee shoots forward, and boom, the rock slices right through his knee. I had a hard time realizing how bad it was at first. But it was bad. Basically his TC moment. My trend having been toward lighter and lighter loads, I just brought shoes, water and chalk out, so I run the half mile back out on the highway to my truck, and drive back with the first aid kit. He slaps the wound together and hobbles to the car, then meets his wife at the parking lot. Ended up with twelve stitches. The Knife Fight project, low start to Turd Burglar, remains unclimbed. April 14. Now that we finally went out together, I begin adding routes on Mountain Project with a vengeance. We end up with almost 70. Some other North Bend bouldering developers express interest (Bryce Overstreet, Richard Kurz, the Badwater Bouldering boys [Jake and Kyle Love]). April 21. Bryce heads out with Trevor and deems Experience Beats Youth mega classic as well. Short Note: The amount of times we said '[hurr durr climbing words] Mega Classic' while out at the boulders rivals the amount of Jack Reacher books Lee Child churns out in a fiscal year, i.e. seventeen billion. May 4. Unrelated, but a spark plug in my car exploded. oh the HOOOMANYTY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! May 10. Jake and Kyle Love, local V11 crushing Youtubers, join me for a day of filming and climbing. The video isn't finished yet or I'd link that mother. They repeat (and occasionally downgrade) all the hardest climbs, including Experience Beats Youth (mega classic according to them), Weight of the Universe, Turd Burglar, Silencer, and .45 Up 46 Down. The Knife Fight Project and the bathang downclimb low start to Weight of the Universe are deemed 'too dabby and too hard.' Jake sends two new V7s on the Titanium Boulder, Kolibri and Bloodshot, now the hardest routes in the area, plus Not Another Bat Hang and Suppressed, the direct finish to Silencer. Thus ends the saga. Here is the link to the Mountain Project page, which has instructions by me that I'm not going to copy/paste. Climbing in Pistol Boulders, Central-West Cascades & Seattle (mountainproject.com) The approach is not amazing with a pad but most of it is on the wide and well-graded Dirty Harry's Peak trail, then the Climbing Access Loop to Gun Show, then down into the clearing between the cliff and the highway. We have a few more projects listed on MP, please send them if you can and report back. Enjoy the boulders if you happen to enjoy bouldering, or I hope you enjoyed my (..........................hehe......................) fake af acid trip TR that was far more fun to write than it is to read, I am sure. -Daniel Montgomery (I'll add pics later, they're all on my phone, and no way I was gonna thumb all that out.) Gear Notes: 10% brushes, pads, chalk, brooms, leaf blower, rake, hoe, shovel, saw; 89% spit and grit, 1% duct tape. Approach Notes: Hike to Gun Show, beeyotch.
  43. 1 point
    Rad looking climbing. Somehow this got even cooler to me now that it’s been discovered that the route has been done before - both teams had incredible, adventurous experiences on the same route.
  44. 1 point
    Just to be clear, this is not me or anyone I know! Just sent to me.....
  45. 1 point
    I want boulderers off the rocks. they are dangerous.
  46. 1 point
    Trip: Chair Peak West Face - [FA] The Upper West Side (WI4+ M4) Trip Date: 01/18/2021 Trip Report: Yesterday @Doug_Hutchinson and I skied out to the west face of Chair with low expectations and too much weight on our backs. As far as I can tell, this face has seen little to no winter climbing activity and was completely off my radar until @Kyle M showed me some photos. Our route started by slogging up ~700ft of steep firm snow with a couple easy ice chokes along the way. Nothing worth roping up for. The sun starts hitting the lower snow slopes around 10am, so I would recommend timing things so you start climbing no later than 10:30. After the slog we arrived at the head of a small alcove where we kicked out a platform and roped up. Gear for a belay is hard to come by, take what you can get. I took the first pitch which ended up being a tricky 20m M4 left facing corner system. Nothing was ever really that hard, but protection was difficult, and the rock quality left something to be desired. A really cool looking super direct mixed pitch can be found just to the right and would probably go at M7. Doug then took the lead on the money pitch. While only about WI4+, this pitch proved to be a pretty serious lead. The crux required climbing into an alcove behind a detached curtain, grabbing a rock hold with your right hand and swinging over a bulge above your head. Not your usual WI4. This pitch took good 10 and 13cm screws, but not always where you want them. One could probably bail back to the snow from here with 2 ropes. Moving forward we climbed a full 65 meters of scrambly snow/rock/ice up to a scottish looking headwall, and up a ramp to the left. Belay off a small tree that may be buried in different conditions. I have a hunch you can go either right or left, not sure which is easier. A short sketchy mixed pitch took us up to the false summit. Not hard, just tenuous and poor pro. ^Placing the only piece on the pitch ^The piece The route finished with a classic Au Cheval alpine ridge traverse with snow and ice on the north side, and warm dry rock on the south. This traverse is VERY poorly protected, and definitely not straight forward. Descent: There are two good options for the descent. The best option by far, is to do this route as a carryover, foregoing the skis and descending the normal route to the east. This requires very firm conditions, but would be much shorter. Since we left our skis in the Melakwa valley, we were forced to descend that direction via a long snow gulley opposite of the standard rappel anchor. The first rappel shares the piton anchor with the standard descent, just in the opposite direction. We left a piton and nut anchor 60M down to the left for future parties. This rappel only got us half way to the next worthy tree, luckily the snow was good for down climbing, but we were well aware of the exposed cliffs below. Two more raps off trees took us to the schrund. Ski back over Bryant col, or for bonus points, continue out via the second half of the Chair peak circumnav in the dark. Link to my Strava track can be found HERE for approach and descent help. Get on this climb! We thought it was pretty classic, and likely not in good condition very frequently. Reach out to me with any beta needs! Thanks to Kyle M for this photo! Green is the route, Red is the descent, and the Yellow dots are rap anchors. The last rap is in a bushy tunnel that may be difficult to find for future parties. Gear Notes: Single rack .2-2, stoppers, KB's and Bugaboos. 6-10 Screws 10-16cm most useful. 2 Pickets brought but never used (per usual). 60m twin ropes. Approach Notes: Ski or boot up and over Bryant/Chair col via pineapple basin. Descend over to Melakwa lake, and up to the base of the wall.
  47. 1 point
    I love this thread! GET R DONE!
  48. 1 point
    Okay, that sounds great, James. Keep me posted please! Theo
  49. 1 point
    Mountaineering in the cascades: Dec-March: Resort skiing, maybe ice climbing, very wet hikes. March-June: Volcano climbs and back country ski tours/ascents. Often long approaches. July-October: Cascade rock and high routes. November: Stay home and drink beer.
  50. 1 point
    Trip: Enchantments - Black Pyramid, Prusik Peak, others Date: 7/11/2010 Trip Report: Stewart (OlympicMtnBoy) and I just finished a great five-day trip in a less traveled area of the enchantments. We started from snow creek TH, headed up Nada creek, climbed a couple of unknown peaks, the Black Pyramid (the NE face?), the south face of Prusik (Beckey route), and exited down Toketie. Overall we had a great time, but we were both pretty happy to see a normal trail after four days of mostly off trail hiking. Day 1: We hiked up to Nada lake early in the morning to try and beat the heat. After a dip in the lake, we headed up the hill for another mile or so (mostly class 3/4) in the hot ass sun to get to the entrance to the Nada creek gully. The route is not particularly hard to follow, but I understand why some people chose to rope up on a few of the sections. After setting up camp and taking a rest, we headed up to the start of the Temple ridge and climbed two small peaks (Nada Creek Crags). One was 4th class (climbers left); the other peak was 2 pitches (5.easy, 5.8). The second peak was fun, with the last pitch requiring climbing through a hole, a chimney, and an OW mantle finish. As would become the norm, the descent took a while. We had an awesome bivy site, good views, with a nice running stream nearby. Day 2: we got up late and went to the Black Pyramid. True to its name, there is a fair bit of lichen on the wall, and since it doesn’t get a great deal of traffic, a descent amount of loose rock. The wind was blowing sustained at about 20, with gust well into the 30+ range. The wind was coming out of the west, so we went to the NE side to get on the "5.6" route. The winds were strong enough that we would be hypothermic after belaying the leader. The gusts also forced the leader to occasionally just stop and try not to be blown off the wall. It definitely makes for exciting climbing. We are not totally sure that we identified the correct line as the pitches went at ~5.7, 5.8 (loose stemming), 5.9 (hard offwidth/chimney), 5.8 super mossy face. Again, I am sure someone has done the route before, or at least many of the pitches, but it doesn’t meet up with the description of the NE face route in the Beckey guide and we didn't see any gear of definite piton scars. The descent off the Black Pyramid took a couple of hours with some raps and down climbing. Day 3: we wanted to do Prusik on day 4, so we moved camp further up the Nada creek basin, we moved it 0.5 miles, it took ~1.5 hours to walk there (bush whacking, rock pulling, pond avoiding fun). We found an awesome bivy site and the mosquitos were not really out yet (that would change the next day). We even took a dip in the lake and dried out in the sun! After setting up camp again it was 1 PM, so we did a little hike to scope out the approach for Prusik from that direction as well as the way we wanted to hike out (down to Toketie wall). Day 4: Up early to hike to Prusik. We had to side hill a large section of snow that was hard in the morning, making the crossing really sketchy with just hiking boots and a trekking pole. After a few hours, we were at the base of the south face of Prusik. Luckily the winds were gone now, but now it was super hot! We started up the Beckey line by hiking a snow mound at the base. We started the line on the correct pitch 1, but definitely were wandering for pitches 2 and 3. We figured out where to be by p4 and did the rest of the route as usual from there. The best climbing started on pitch 5, where Stewart cruised a nice hand crack with interesting features. However, this is where things went wrong for me. When seconding, I fell. As a second, this is not much of a problem, but we were using his thin Joker rope, and the stretch in the line allowed me to take a long fall. I went 15 feet into a ledge, smacked both of my legs pretty hard, and then flipped upside-down and traveled another 5+ feet below the ledge. It was perhaps the scariest fall that I have ever had (and it was on TR!). I was shaking pretty hard from the adrenaline, but I finished the pitch, scared as hell to fall again. When I hit the belay, I crashed. I was tired, hot, and super sketched out. Stew did a great job of calming me down and forcing me to rest. After sitting there for a half an hour waiting for the adrenaline to wear off, we determined that luckily I just had some bumps and bruises. As I was still shaking some, Stewart took the final crux pitch, and we topped out at about 5 or so. We rapped off, headed down and did the hike back to camp. The mosquitos appeared that night, but luckily a couple of cigars scared them off. Day 5: we headed out of the NW end of the Nada creek valley, up to the ridge, and dropped down into the Toketie lake valley. There is a "trail" that goes through the area that we luckily found, but there is so much vegetation, blow-down, and snow that it was really hard to follow for more than 50 feet at a time. After an hour or two we arrived at Toketie lake. Toketie wall is awesome. The wall is huge with lots of route potential. There were lots of good bivy sites and the views are out of control. New route development would be a major undertaking though. We made it to far side of the lake, filled up with water and then started the rest of the descent. The route heads straight down for ~2800 vertical in about 0.8 miles where you intersect the Snow Creek trail. Again we luckily found the "trail", but the whole thing is basically loose dirt, rocks, and tons of blow-down the entire way. To top it off, it was insanely hot. This section of hiking took us a little over 3 hours to come down, I bet it’s a pleasure to hike up. We hiked another 1.5 hours back down to the snow creek wall baking in the sun, and headed home. Nada lake looking up the Nada creek valley When you near the end of the boulder field, you cut right and up this: Three musketeers Beginning peaks of Temple Ridge Summit of unknown peak #2 Gotta bring the horse cock along for the trip Black Pyramid, Comet, Meteor, Professor, and friends… Pitch 1 of the Black Pyramid: Matt on pitch 2: Matt on p4: Rappel off the backside (south) of Black Pyramid Descending the Black Pyramid: Black Pyramid routes: Camp for nights 3 and 4: Day hikin’ Lighthouse tower, Comet, Meteor, Professor, and friends Temple peak The west end of Temple ridge, we approached Prusik by side hilling in the snow Edward’s platue: West face of Prusik (a party is starting p1) Stewart loves chimneys! Stewart starting pitch 3: Stewart coming up Snafflehound ledge: Stewart, the High Priest, Matt Temple ridge from Prusik: Approximate trip route: Gear Notes: Bring a thicker rope, gear to 4” took care of everything we did up there. Ice axe would have been nice in a few spots. Approach Notes: While we were able to follow portions of trails some of the time, these trails are definitely not well defined and you can expect lots of downfall, bushes, and for us, snow sections.
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